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Lisa King


Asda’a BM, Director, consumer and healthcare practice | England | 40

Lisa King


Asda’a BM, Director, consumer and healthcare practice | England | 40

I first noticed a lump six months before I was diagnosed. I was living in the UK at the time, and my doctor told me it was nothing to worry about – so I completely forgot about it. Six months later I was sitting back on the sofa and noticed it again and thought I should probably go and get it re-checked.

I went back to the GP and she wasn’t sure what it was, so I found a very reputable breast surgeon and made an appointment at the Princess Grace hospital in London, and they ran a few tests. It turned out that it wasn’t fine, and that I had Grade 1 breast cancer. I was really lucky. It wasn’t aggressive and they managed to catch it at a very early stage

I first noticed a lump six months before I was diagnosed. I was living in the UK at the time, and my doctor told me it was nothing to worry about – so I completely forgot about it. Six months later I was sitting back on the sofa and noticed it again and thought I should probably go and get it re-checked.

I went back to the GP and she wasn’t sure what it was, so I found a very reputable breast surgeon and made an appointment at the Princess Grace hospital in London, and they ran a few tests. It turned out that it wasn’t fine, and that I had Grade 1 breast cancer. I was really lucky. It wasn’t aggressive and they managed to catch it at a very early stage

lisa

Obviously, when you’re diagnosed, it’s a massive shock. I never expected to be walking out of there with a cancer diagnosis. I was in no pain, I was the fittest I had ever been, I was running 10ks. I didn’t feel unhealthy or anything. There was no indication at all, maybe it’s fate that I just happened to notice it again and want to have it checked.

Getting rid of cancer isn’t a quick process. Luckily I didn’t have to have chemotherapy, but I had a lumpectomy to have it removed, followed by a six week course of radiotherapy – which is every week day , and 3 years on tamoxifen.

I felt very lucky that it was one of the most treatable forms of breast cancer. The hospital was clear about my recovery and the outlook was pretty optimistic – but it’s still hard not to get worried about it.

I came through the other side of it having been regularly in and out of the hospital, and it was a bit of a shock to step away from the support network back into the real world. For me, the whole experience gave me an entirely different perspective. When I was in London, I worked very long hours, I was single and focused on my career and I don’t think I really had the right work-life balance.

Obviously, when you’re diagnosed, it’s a massive shock. I never expected to be walking out of there with a cancer diagnosis. I was in no pain, I was the fittest I had ever been, I was running 10ks. I didn’t feel unhealthy or anything. There was no indication at all, maybe it’s fate that I just happened to notice it again and want to have it checked.

Getting rid of cancer isn’t a quick process. Luckily I didn’t have to have chemotherapy, but I had a lumpectomy to have it removed, followed by a six week course of radiotherapy – which is every week day , and 3 years on tamoxifen.

I felt very lucky that it was one of the most treatable forms of breast cancer. The hospital was clear about my recovery and the outlook was pretty optimistic – but it’s still hard not to get worried about it.

I came through the other side of it having been regularly in and out of the hospital, and it was a bit of a shock to step away from the support network back into the real world. For me, the whole experience gave me an entirely different perspective. When I was in London, I worked very long hours, I was single and focused on my career and I don’t think I really had the right work-life balance.

A good friend once told me that when something really defining happens in your life, you should use it as an opportunity to say yes to more things. It’s a really good point. Often, I’d say I was too busy or didn’t know the people, so wouldn’t go. One of the things that changed for me is just embracing life more and saying yes to things that perhaps I wouldn’t have previously. I may not have met my husband – we met on a skiing holiday, which was part of my plan to see even more of the world after cancer.

A good friend once told me that when something really defining happens in your life, you should use it as an opportunity to say yes to more things. It’s a really good point. Often, I’d say I was too busy or didn’t know the people, so wouldn’t go. One of the things that changed for me is just embracing life more and saying yes to things that perhaps I wouldn’t have previously. I may not have met my husband – we met on a skiing holiday, which was part of my plan to see even more of the world after cancer.

I also felt very passionate about giving something back, and I helped raise £10,000 for The Royal Marsden Hospital research into breast cancer through a cycling challenge in the French Alps. They pitched it to me as a group of unfit blokes on old bikes cycling up hills to raise money for charity. I thought, yes, I can ride a bike, sure. What I didn’t realise was that it was three stages of the Tour de France. I thought it would just be up and down hills, quite relaxed. I had no idea that it would be solidly up mountains for 10 hours plus a day. On the last day we cycled up a mountain in the morning, and then we did the L’Alpe d’Huez with its 21switchbacks in the afternoon. To this day I don’t know how I did it. I got to the end and threw the bike at my now husband and said I never want to see the bike again. I still don’t know how I did it – it was just sheer grit and determination because honestly, it was pretty hideous from start to finish. But I had all this money behind me so there was no way that I was going to stop.

Cancer really changed my outlook on life. I’m much more able to cope with whatever life throws at me. I used to find that things would stress me out, and now it doesn’t so much. Especially with work, there’s always a solution to things, even when the going gets tough, we get through it.

I also felt very passionate about giving something back, and I helped raise £10,000 for The Royal Marsden Hospital research into breast cancer through a cycling challenge in the French Alps. They pitched it to me as a group of unfit blokes on old bikes cycling up hills to raise money for charity. I thought, yes, I can ride a bike, sure. What I didn’t realise was that it was three stages of the Tour de France. I thought it would just be up and down hills, quite relaxed. I had no idea that it would be solidly up mountains for 10 hours plus a day. On the last day we cycled up a mountain in the morning, and then we did the L’Alpe d’Huez with its 21switchbacks in the afternoon. To this day I don’t know how I did it. I got to the end and threw the bike at my now husband and said I never want to see the bike again. I still don’t know how I did it – it was just sheer grit and determination because honestly, it was pretty hideous from start to finish. But I had all this money behind me so there was no way that I was going to stop.

Cancer really changed my outlook on life. I’m much more able to cope with whatever life throws at me. I used to find that things would stress me out, and now it doesn’t so much. Especially with work, there’s always a solution to things, even when the going gets tough, we get through it.

lisa-king

For me, cancer has been an extremely positive thing. I got married, we move to Dubai three years ago, and we’re now expecting our first baby in November. I still go to London twice a year for checkups, but I feel very fortunate to have lived through cancer and feel it has given me an entirely new outlook on life.

For me, cancer has been an extremely positive thing. I got married, we move to Dubai three years ago, and we’re now expecting our first baby in November. I still go to London twice a year for checkups, but I feel very fortunate to have lived through cancer and feel it has given me an entirely new outlook on life.

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To download the Arabic version of the story, click here

To download the French version of the story, click here

To download the English version of the story, click here

To download the Arabic version of the story, click here

To download the French version of the story, click here